Junior guard Ethan Danzig (Clarks Green, Pa./Abington Heights) had a game-high 26 points and senior center John Vitkus (Mahopac, N.Y./Mahopac) added 22 as The University of Scranton men's basketball team never trailed while routing Landmark Conference rival Catholic, 92-71, on Saturday afternoon in the Long Center.
The Royals (12-5, 4-2 Landmark) put up their highest point total of the season while snapping a two-game losing streak. The victory was also the 299th of head coach Carl Danzig's career. He'll go for no. 300 on Wednesday, Jan. 25, when the Royals visit Drew at 7 p.m.
Scranton opened the game with a 15-2 run in the first 4:09 to take control. Catholic (13-4, 5-1 Landmark) got no closer than nine the rest of the game, and that came just moments later. The Royals held a 53-35 lead at halftime thanks to 18-for-28 (64.3 percent) shooting in the first half, including 6-for-10 from 3-point range. Danzig was a perfect 4-for-4 from beyond the arc in the opening 20 minutes while junior guard Chris McCullough (Harborfields, N.Y./Greenlawn) was 2-for-3.
The second half was more of the same with the Royals shooting 51.7 percent (15-for-29), including four of nine from deep. They led by as many as 28 before both teams emptied the benches in the final minutes.
Scranton also received 15 points and four assists from McCullough. Freshman guard Kyle DeVerna (Rockville Centre, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) had nine points, four rebounds, four assists and a block off the bench, and junior forward Drew Schankweiler (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Mechanicsburg) had nine points, three rebounds, two assists and a steal.
The Royals shot 57.9 percent (33-fo-57) overall, their second-highest mark of the season. They were 10-for-19 (52.6 percent) from 3-point range and 16 of 19 (84.2 percent) from 3-point range. Scranton held a 35-27 edge on the boards as Vitkus had 11 rebounds for his ninth double-double of the season. They also had 13 turnovers while handing out 25 assists, including a team-high six from junior guard Kevin Doolan (Basking Ridge, N.J./Ridge).
Catholic shot just 32.7 percent (18-for-55) from the field, despite hitting seven of 19 3-pointers (36.8 percent). The Cardinals tried to stay in it at the foul line, making 28 of 32 (87.5 percent), but couldn't overcome Scranton's 38-18 edge in points in the paint.
The Royals will be back in action on Wednesday, Jan. 25, when they travel to Madison, N.J. to face Drew in a Landmark Conference game at 7 p.m.